A Survey of its Formats, Technologies, and Triumphs
The Cary Graphic Arts Collection, on the occasion of the Future of Reading conference at RIT (June 9-12, 2010), is pleased to display a selection of landmark books from the long history of making books. On view are some of the earliest formats for the book, including the tablet and the scroll. Here are technical treatises on various printing processes and examples of important substrates. Some of these books are not necessarily beautiful in and of themselves, but they contain the accumulated wisdom and technical knowledge of master printers and graphic arts experts. In addition, this exhibition features a selection of typographic masterpieces from the collection, one from every century of printing. In some cases, it was hard to make just the right choice so, next time, other books might take the places of those on view today!
Most importantly, this exhibition represents only a small fraction of the holdings of the Cary Collection, a library open to the public, but intended specifically for use by students and scholars in the graphic arts. There are few libraries like this in the country. Our unprecedented array of resources will provide you with a historical context for the book and may illuminate your invesigation of what the future might hold for books—and for reading.
—David Pankow, Curator